Let's start with you telling us a little bit about yourself, Jaime.
I’m blessed to have two creative outlets – I’m an author (did I just say that?) and my alter ego is a book cover designer & artist (I design under the name Reese Dante). I met my hubby at 19 and have been with him ever since. We don’t have children but do have a spoiled 125lb dog named Rocco who lets us live in his home.
What would people be most surprised to learn about you?
I never thought I would ever be an author.
When did you start writing, is it something you've always been interested in, or did it develop later in life?
It definitely developed later in life. I began writing a story in my late teens. It was a story that seemed to go on forever and I wrote it for years, a little bit at a time. I never told another person I was writing nor did I ever allow anyone to read it. I lost the diskette and printouts of the story when Hurricane Andrew hit my South Florida home.
After joining the corporate world, I wrote technical, instructional, and business articles. Absolutely nothing that would be considered creative writing or romance. A Better Man is my first published story.
Has it been everything you thought it would be or not?
It’s far more than I could have imagined.
Writing takes a lot of work, dedication, and sacrifice. It’s not easy. At all. But there’s nothing like getting a message from a reader with a comment about how the story touched them or how they loved one of your characters. I could never have imagined the feelings or emotions that come with that. To me, that’s priceless and wonderful and reminds me of how blessed I am that I’m able to write a story that inspires that.
How did it feel when you realized that your very first book was going to be published?
Excited and terrified. LOL
What's your favorite part of writing a book?
There are a lot of things I love about writing and I couldn’t possible pick a favorite.
The process is therapeutic. Cathartic. I’m a very private person so I tend to pour my emotions into a story. Thankfully, I’m not a linear writer, so if I know there’s a scene that requires a lot of anger and I’ve had a bad day, I jump to that scene like a moth to a light. LOL
It’s odd, I’m a planner. I love lists. And I’m a control freak. But there’s something pretty amazing when a character does or says something I hadn’t expected. Or when the story takes an unplanned direction to an end you ‘kinda’ see but don’t exactly know how you’re going to get there. There’s a thrill in letting the story guide you and trusting your characters to take you there.
Do you get time to read for pleasure? If so, which books do you enjoy?
Yes, but not as much as I’d like. I enjoy reading romance. I need that happily ever after.
Are there any other genres you'd be interested in writing?
I prefer to write contemporary romance. However, book two in the series had a romantic suspense element I enjoyed writing and my latest release has a few mystery and crime/action elements. I love the action element – a car chase, a gun fight, a fist fight – so I can see myself writing something with greater weight on those elements.
I’ve also had a totally different story in my mind for quite some time. I’m not sure I’ll ever write it because it requires some world building, but maybe someday I’ll actually bite the bullet and explore that story a little more.
Please tell us a little about your most recent release.
My most recent release is the latest installment in The Men of Halfway House series. It’s the story of Aidan and Jessie and is titled, A Mended Man. Although neither man is a resident of the house, the house is the reason their paths crossed. The reader is first introduced to these characters in the second book, A Hunted Man. While they are attracted to each other – and have been for some time – neither has taken a step to explore the attraction because they both have rather intense and difficult backstories. In A Mended Man, circumstances force them together and push them to confront their demons. It’s a slow building courtship and a story of healing deep wounds they need to mend in order to finally be together and reach their happily ever after.
What can we look forward to in the future from you?
I’m currently working on the next story in The Men of Halfway House series. I also have a non-series book I’ve started, but I don’t have a clue when that one will be ready. I’m trying to focus my limited writing time more on the next Halfway House story because these guys are insistent and pushing me endlessly on a daily basis to write it.
Anything you want to say to your readers?
Thank you. <3
I appreciate each and every one of you for taking the time to read my story and join my guys in their fight for their HEA. Thank you for the endless fountain of support you provide. I’m incredibly grateful.
Jaime Reese's three most recent releases
A Mended Man (The Men of Halfway House 4)
A story of healing and confronting demons…
Detective Aidan Calloway is rock-solid strong. He’s a man of justice—loyal to his friends, family, and job—even if it requires bending a law…or two. He shields himself behind an abrasive, fearless facade, until a phone call one night chips his armor and throws his perfectly planned, hollow life into a tailspin.
Jessie Vega is the epitome of optimism. His carefully crafted attitude of hope and positivity protects him from a past filled with too much pain. When a ghost from a dark time resurfaces and nearly breaks him, he must tap into his inner strength or risk losing everything he’s worked so hard to build.
But Jessie can’t do it alone. He must fight to break through Aidan’s ironclad defenses to reveal the heart of the man hiding beneath the tough surface and mend his damaged spirit. Only then can they truly heal and become strong enough to battle the demons that haunt them and threaten their chance to finally be together.
***This book contains scenes and subject matter some readers may find distressing.***
A Restored Man (The Men of Halfway House 3)
Cole Renzo thinks his greatest challenge is to behave for the remainder of his term at Halfway House. Until he meets his new boss, Ty Calloway, a man who ticks off every box on Cole’s list of interests.
A sought-after restorer and customizer of exotic and collectible cars, Ty had enough confidence to command what he wanted in life, until one fateful night changed everything. Almost two years later, he’s slowly rebuilding his life with great control. He’s defied the odds and works tirelessly to be the man he once was—but he still feels broken.
Cole’s candor and unfiltered personality awaken Ty’s barely-remembered desire to greet each new day with a smile, while Ty’s unwavering acceptance of Cole’s quirks and brash humor makes Cole feel as if he fits in for the first time in far too long. When a nemesis threatens Ty’s personal restoration and the things he holds dear, Cole is determined to protect their relationship, even if that means sacrificing everything he’s worked so hard to achieve.
But Ty will have to let his guard down, surrender control, and admit he needs Cole first, even if that puts himself at risk of breaking beyond repair.
A Hunted Man (The Men of Halfway House 2)
After surviving ten years in prison, Cameron Pierce is attempting to put the past behind him. He tries to adjust to his newfound freedom with a place at the halfway house and a job. But one lesson he learned in prison keeps him guarded: hope is a dangerous thing.
Hunter Donovan, Assistant State Attorney, is a man of justice who loves a challenge. After a lifetime of putting his career first, a milestone brings him to a harsh realization—he’s lonely.
Hunter’s world changes when he meets Cam. The wary young man intrigues him and awakens a desire unlike anything he’s ever experienced. When Cam’s past resurfaces and threatens to rip them apart, their budding relationship is challenged and Cam’s hope for a future begins to dim.
These outside forces hunting Cam will stop at nothing to send him back to prison. But they’ll have to get past Hunter first.
Excerpt from A Mended Man (Men of Halfway House 4)
A scene between Aidan and Jessie. (from Aidan’s POV…)
“You don’t give up, do you?”
“Not when it comes to you. No.”
“Jess, I’m not easy. I have more baggage than the underbelly of a cargo plane.”
“Then I’ll set my bags right next to yours.”
He shook his head. No one had ever been this relentless to be with his miserable ass.
“I’ve got one last question for you,” Jessie said.
Aidan turned his head slightly toward him but refused to make eye contact.
“Do you…” Jessie hesitated and rubbed his hands on his thighs again, revealing a hint of that introverted, vulnerable side others usually saw when they looked at him. “Do you want to be with me?”
Point-blank. That was the million-dollar question that determined how this conversation would end. Even if he did have enough energy to erect his shield, he couldn’t lie to Jessie. He exhaled heavily. “More than anything.”
“Then that settles it.”
“Jess…it’s not that easy.”
“Don’t make it harder.”
Aidan sighed. “I’m not used to this,” he said, gesturing between them with his hand.
“Talking or having a relationship?”
“Either. Both. Fuck if I know.”
“Okay. Well, you’ve never had a problem talking to me before, so we’ll work up to the big stuff. One detail a week. I’m not going to stress you out with a one-a-day quota. One detail we wouldn’t share with anyone else.”
One a week. Aidan forcefully rubbed his hands together. He could handle that. Maybe. Sorta.
“And as far as the whole relationship thing, I’m not an expert. But, we kinda already have something. Don’t you think?” Jessie looked over to him with a hint of a smile playing in his expression, cocking his head.
He definitely wasn’t an expert in relationships, but if Jessie thought this defined a relationship, then maybe he could totally handle this.
Jessie bumped his shoulder. “We’re just missing out on all the fun stuff.”
Aidan groaned. It drove him nuts when Jessie teased him.
“I’m not saying it’ll be easy. I know…” Jessie hesitated and rubbed his thighs again. “I know we’re both very different from each other and from what other people usually see when they look at us. But…I see you, not the guy you want everyone else to see. And you’re worth it, Aidan. It bothers me that you don’t recognize how amazing you are, but I’m willing to give this a shot. I just…I hope you think the same of me.” He quieted for a few moments then subtly nodded, concluding some internal conversation. “You work at things so you can appreciate the success at the end.”
Aidan shook his head and scoffed. Jessie and his inspirational poster lines…too fucking cute to deny. His ability to take a mountain and turn it into a few pellets of dust always amazed Aidan. Jessie was bossier than people could imagine and far more of a control freak than anyone suspected.
“You’re totally worth it.”